Nursing for Happy, Healthy Newborns

Establishing a healthy eating pattern for a newborn can be difficult because newborns do not have a real schedule. They must eat-on-demand. Ultimately this means that if you have a baby that is less than one that you are at the mercy of his or her whims.

For the first month of life the healthiest thing you can do for a child is give up all plans and feed that baby when it is hungry. Most babies will want to feed every three to four hours. Interestingly, most newborns do not scream when they are hungry. Instead they pucker their lips, nuzzle an arm or breast or suck on a fist. Be aware of these signs because you do not want your baby to ever be hungry. A hungry baby often grows up to be a nerve-wracked and insecure.

You should, if possible, choose to breast feed your baby rather than use a bottle. This is because mother’s milk contains everything that a baby needs to grow. Your breast milk contains hormones and other substances that also help the baby develop a healthy brain and immune system. A bottle-fed baby is more likely to develop allergies later in life.

Even though woman have been to alternate breasts every few minutes when feeding a new baby the experts are now saying that it is best to use one breast for one feeding session and then use the other for the next. Staying on one best when the baby is latched onto your nipple is a good way to make sure that the baby receives hind milk. Hind milk is last to leave the breast – the dregs and it has the most nutrition.

You also do not want the baby to associate mealtimes with a lot of stress. Do not nurse if you feel stressed or angry. Make sure that when you do nurse that you are comfortably supported with pillows and are calm and well-nourished.

Yet another thing to consider is whether or not your newborn will need supplementation with Vitamin D. This is usually required nowadays as research scientists have shown that most people, including nursing mothers are short of it. Consult your doctor to see if you and your newborn or both of you need to take extra Vitamin D every day.

Take vitamins as recommended by your doctor when nursing. Remember that part of keeping your newborn healthy is keeping yourself healthy too!